Book Review: The ABC Murders by Agatha Christie-by Achira Samaratunga
The ABC Murders is a murder-mystery fiction novel written by Agatha Christie, featuring her most famous character, Belgian detective Hercule Poirot. It documents Poirot trying to catch a serial killer who seems to follow an alphabetic pattern when carrying out his crimes.
This story is one of Christie’s most acclaimed and popular books and it is easy to see why. It is told from a couple of perspectives, which creates an intriguing atmosphere. Being able to see the two sides of the story heading towards each other from an early stage is suspenseful
and entices you to keep reading. Christie’s writing style indicates that a lot of the details early in the narrative are just setting up the story. However, a select few of them end up playing an important part in the mystery and you find yourself playing detective and trying
to solve the mystery along with Poirot. This book is the 13th novel in the Hercule Poirot series, hence many of the traits and tropes of the
characters and storytelling have been established, so a first-time reader of Christie’s work might feel a bit alienated. The story is structured well and moves along quickly, but it is not until the last chapter that there is a proper resolution to the mystery. It keeps you hooked
into the story until the very end.
I was first exposed to Christie’s literature from other types of media, like movies and video games. To me, that shows how much influence she has had on pop culture. I was eager to pick up one of her books and experience her writing, and The ABC Murders did not disappoint. The characters of the story are all written in a way that I felt I could not rule them out as being a suspect in the mystery and the main character Poirot weaves his way through the puzzle in a unique way. I felt like I missed some key points once I reached the end of the story, leaving me confused on how Poirot managed to solve the case. That encouraged me to possibly revisit the book later and try to pick up on the clues that are placed throughout the narrative. This did not take away from my experience as I still enjoyed the reveal at the end. To any new readers of Agatha Christie’s books, I would probably recommend starting on one of Poirot’s earlier adventures, however, if you are a fan of murder mystery and crime novels in general, this novel is definitely a great read.
Achira is a 23 year old pharmacist who has enjoyed reading books since he was very young. Achira contributed to the very first issue of this newsletter in September 2006 when he was a 9 year old